Kaspersky Small Office Security review

It’s more simplistic than its rivals, but Kaspersky Small Office Security still has great protection and plenty of easy-to-use tools

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Our Rating 
5/5
Price when reviewed 
80
inc VAT for five PCs, five handhelds, one server

Specifications

OS Support: PCs: Windows XP Home/Professional (32bit) SP3 , Professional (64bit) SP2, Vista SP1, 7 SP1, 8, 8.1. Servers: Windows Server 2008 R2/Standard SP1, SBS 2008 SP2, SBS 2011 Essentials, SBS 2011 Standard SP1, Windows Server 2012 R2/Foundation/Essentials/Standard , Minimum CPU: Not stated, Minimum GPU: N/A, Minimum RAM: Not stated, Hard disk space: 800MB

Kasperksy Small Office Security is a security suite for PCs, Windows servers and Android phones for smaller firms who want to take control of their workers' devices without needing dedicated IT personnel to manage it for them. There are two types of package available: one with five PC licences and one with 10. Both of these include five smartphone/tablet licences and one server licence.

Aside from superb protection performance, Kaspersky earned its Best Buy award from us in our last round of testing because of its simple and intuitive interface and its clever way of handling the management of multiple PCs on a network.

Read our comprehensive guide to Internet Security 2015

As with any business security, you will need to consider whether the slight limitations of the package still meet your requirements. For example, you won't be able to protect Apple devices running iOS or OS X and if you have an on-site mail server you won't be able to protect that either. For many smaller businesses this won't be a big problem, but if it is, you will have to upgrade to one of Kaspersky's more expensive business products or look at Symantec Endpoint Protection Small Business Edition.

^ Kaspersky Small Office Security has a friendly and neatly designed interface

Small Office Security behaves in a similar way to conventional home security suites, with local clients running on each Windows PC on a network. Android phones and servers running versions of Windows Server between 2008 and 2012 are also supported. The difference with Small Office Security is that you can manage other Kaspersky users on your network, locking their installations of Kaspersky down with a password so they can't stray beyond the boundaries you've set.

There are a lot of options available depending on how little you trust your employees, including the ability to monitor instant messaging, block applications, set times when the PC is allowed to be used and block certain websites. It's similar to how you would set limits on a PC that is being used by a child, and it's simple enough to set up for users who may not be completely familiar with cyber security.

Any computer can gain access to the Management Console element of the software, but only if they have the admin password. This means you can make changes to each individual PC's settings either from your own PC or from the device you're tweaking.

^ The tools available to admins are easy to use but might be too simple for some tastes

Aside from the remote management, there are plenty of other tools designed to keep the client PCs in good condition and recover from infections. There's file encryption and file shredding to ensure thieves who have physically stolen a device can't gain access to critical files, and there's a troubleshooting service to clean up any damage done by particularly troublesome infections.

Each installation gets Kaspersky's Password Manager and Safe Money tools as well as a scheduled backup option, which allows you to keep your files safe via local, network or Cloud storage.

In our testing, Kaspersky Small Office Security scored 276 out of 300, successfully defending against 96 out of 100 threats, with one further threat making it on to the PC before being neutralised. Three pieces of malware compromised our test PC, though.

The software was very well behaved when it came to the installation of legitimate software, not blocking a single friendly application and notching up a maximum score of 846.

Kaspersky Small Office Security is a powerful and reliable security package perfectly targeted at concerned small business owners who may not have a dedicated IT staff member. While its protection score falls slightly short of the high standards set by Symantec Endpoint Protection Small Business Edition, it's a great buy, especially at this price. 

System requirements
OS Support PCs: Windows XP Home/Professional (32bit) SP3 , Professional (64bit) SP2, Vista SP1, 7 SP1, 8, 8.1. Servers: Windows Server 2008 R2/Standard SP1, SBS 2008 SP2, SBS 2011 Essentials, SBS 2011 Standard SP1, Windows Server 2012 R2/Foundation/Essentials/Standard
Minimum CPU Not stated
Minimum GPU N/A
Minimum RAM Not stated
Hard disk space 800MB
Buying information
Price including VAT £80
Supplier www.ebuyer.com
Details www.kaspersky.co.uk
Product code Small Office Security